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Ragtime or Rocky?

Many of us begin thinking about the upcoming weekend on Monday.  Sometimes you have to.  Today I am thinking about Saturday night, because I had plans but got another offer.

My plan was to participate in Ritz and Ragtime at Rutger Park, a fundraiser for the Landmarks Society of Greater Utica. I will join other members of LiFT, Little Falls’ community theatre, dressing in 1920’s costumes and interacting with guests in a Prohibition Era setting. There will be music and drinks in a magnificent setting.  I have participated in this event before; it’s great.

Then I found out that the Capitol Theatre in Rome, NY is showing The Rocky Horror Picture Show!   An interactive screening in a magnificent setting!   I have only seen Rocky Horror on home video and, more recently DVD.  Friends have told me about the audience participation, but I have never witnessed it.  Additionally,  a couple of long time friends (no, they are not old!) are going.

I still plan to go to the fundraiser.  I think people are counting on me.  Full disclosure: I also have a fabulous new dress I am dying to wear.  However, if things were to change unexpectedly,  it’s nice to know I have options.  Also, if I really want to see Rocky Horror,  there will be another showing Oct. 13.  I would just have to find different friends to go with.

At any rate, if anybody says there is nothing to do around here, I fear they are just not paying attention.  Here are two great pieces of entertainment for one Saturday night!

Ritz and Ragtime at Rutger Park runs from 7 to 10:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 available through Eventbrite.  Rocky Horror Picture Show will be playing at the Capitol Theatre, 230 W. Dominick St., Rome, NY, at 10:30 p.m.   Tickets are available through

And for anybody who looked at the times of the events and is about to suggest I fly from Utica to Rome and take in both… Well, let’s just say that is probably not going to happen.


A Capitol Time

Friday night, Steven and I traveled into Rome, NY to the Capitol Theatre to attend a screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window.

The Capitol Theatre is a truly gorgeous old time movie palace. It is where I saw my first movie (Mary Poppins), roughly a hundred years ago. I saw other movies there, till it closed. The building fell on some hard times. It was used occasionally for stage shows such as Rome Catholic High’s musical. Now it’s a Center for the Performing Arts, and they do all kinds of fun stuff there. This is the first event we’ve been able to make it to.

The Capitol first opened in 1928, I recently learned. I just knew it was old. It’s never been renovated, that is, chopped up into a six screen cineplex, for which I am grateful. The ceilings are high and ornate. The balcony goes back forever. It seats over 1,000 people (1,788, according to the brochure I picked up).

Steven and I got there early, so we had time to walk around a little and explore. We climbed up the steps to the balcony. There is a large foyer-type of room with a few comfy chairs and a piano, then you go up another small set of steps and through an opening about a third of the way down the balcony.

We walked up toward the top of the balcony. It went back just about as far as I remembered. I also remembered there being bats, once during a performance of Oklahoma! I was in, one summer during high school. I didn’t see any Friday night, though. With the theatre more occupied these days, perhaps the bats have found other quarters.

We decided to sit right in the front of the balcony. First we went and got popcorn and soda (me) as well as coffee (Steve). I don’t usually drink soda, but they were having a special on a large soda and large popcorn. I didn’t finish either.

The movie was wonderful. Rear Window is one of our favorites, but I have never seen it on such a big screen. The movie concerns Jimmy Stewart, wheelchair bound with a broken leg, looking out his window at his neighbors in the surrounding apartments. It was fascinating to notice all the details I missed on a television screen.

The Capitol hosts a variety of events. We picked up a flier that listed movies, a Celtic-Rock group called The Elders, Joshua Kane’s Psychic show, and others. We voted on next year’s Hitchcock selection (Steve wants Lifeboat, I picked Strangers On A Train). We also hope to return in August for CapitolFest II, three days of silent and early sound films.

For more information on the capitol, visit their website at You can also like them on Facebook.